Vatican II


The Second Vatican Council was summoned by Pope John XXIII on January 25, 1959, as an ecumenical council charged with renewal of the Roman Catholic Church. The preceding post-Reformation Councils of Trent (1543–1565) and First Vatican Council (1869–1870) had sought to define the Church dogmatically in relation, respectively, to Protestantism and the liberal ideas unleashed by the French Revolution, which had come to inform the practices of secular governments in western Europe and North America. In contrast, Vatican II sought to redefine the Church’s identity and its relationship...

Image for: Vatican II

Bronze medal of Pope Paul VI (Yale University Art Gallery)

View Full Size